By  on August 8, 2008

Retail Ventures Inc. will not renew the employment contract of Heywood Wilansky, president and chief executive officer, which expires Jan. 31, 2009.

The company cited cost savings and the sale of 81 percent of  the 113-unit Value City discount department store chain last January as reasons for not extending Wilansky’s tenure. The stake was sold to an entity consisting of VCDS Acquisition Holdings LLC, Emerald Capital Management LLC and Crystal Value LLC.

Retail Ventures operates the DSW footwear chain selling brands at discount prices in about 260 locations, and Filene’s Basement, the 36-unit off-price fashion chain, primarily in Boston, New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Baltimore and Washington.

The company reported that second-quarter sales for the 13 weeks ended Aug. 2 decreased 1 percent to $459.8 million from $464.6 million in the year-ago period. Same-store sales fell 5.1 percent.

Total sales for the 26 weeks slid 0.5 percent to $926.1 million from $930.5 million and same-store sales declined 4.7 percent.

Shares in the company dropped 31 cents on Thursday to close at $4.14 on the New York Stock Exchange. The stock has lost about two-thirds of its value over the past year.

Wilansky has headed Retail Ventures since November 2004. According to Securities and Exchange Commission filings, Wilansky was paid a $1.1 million salary last year. He received no bonus for the year ended Jan. 31. In 2006, his total compensation was $7.6 million, including salary, stock awards, options and other items.

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